Joint agencies interdict 23 migrants

SAN DIEGO – A joint agency collaboration led to the interdiction of a 25-foot panga carrying 23 suspected illegal migrants off the coast of Oceanside, Calif., early this morning.

At about 1:40 a.m., a Customs and Border Protection boat crew located the panga and detained the suspected migrants until the Coast Guard Cutter Sea Otter arrived to transport them.

Of the 23 people aboard, 22 people were transferred to the Sea Otter. CBP took custody of one person and the panga. The suspected migrants and their vessel were then transported to Shelter Island and taken into custody by the Department of Homeland Security Maritime Task Force for further investigation.

The Sea Otter’s boat crew checked each of the people for signs of injuries and hypothermia. There were 17 males and six females aboard the panga. Each person was wearing life jacket and appeared to be in good condition.

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